It’s been said that the hardest part of writing an essay isn’t coming up with the ideas or getting the facts down – it’s knowing when to stop.
When you write an essay, it should flow naturally from start to finish, so it’s easy to get caught up in your own brilliance and keep on going until your essay turns into a novel instead of staying focused on the point you set out to make.
This can be problematic for college students because there are typically word limits on assignments, so you need to learn how to structure your arguments properly and know when to stop writing them.
Why college essays?
Essays are a vital part of any undergraduate course, so it’s important to understand what they entail.
An essay can take the form of a critique, an argumentative essay, a reflective essay, or any other genre as defined by your teacher.
Regardless of the type of essay you write, there are three basic steps: selecting a topic and supporting it with evidence from scholarly sources; developing an organizational structure and providing support in the form of strong examples or illustrations.
How College essays can impact your degree
In addition to grades, essays play a big role in how you will complete your degree at the end of college.
They give teachers insight into your personality and values.
A well-written essay shows a teacher that you put effort into understanding their instructions, even if the outcome wasn’t perfect. If they read something poorly written or see no effort put forth at all then they will assume you are either unmotivated, lazy or both.
Either way, they won’t grade as favourably as someone who invested time in understanding them and produced a quality paper.
College essays are a great way to not only show your understanding of the material but also to show your character.
This is a good opportunity to let your professor know who you are and that you care about the subject they are teaching.
Putting some time and effort into writing a quality essay could make or break whether or not you get that coveted A on your next assignment.
On the contary if you continuosly fail your college essays, then you risk being kcked out.
How to write a college essay
College essay writing may seem difficult at first, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes second nature.
An effective college essay introduction makes readers want to read more about the subject and sets up expectations for the paper’s development.
The conclusion should summarize all points made in previous sections and reiterate their importance. It is also helpful to include some personal reflections on the ideas presented, especially when writing a reflective essay.
In order to achieve a well-organized and coherent essay, it is important to focus on one idea at a time, and then develop each one using different rhetorical strategies such as rhetorical questions, parallelism (the use of two or more similar structures), persuasive techniques such as analogy or comparison, linguistic techniques such as repetition, figures of speech like simile or metaphor), etc.
Each paragraph must be thematically related to the following ones and contribute to the progression of thoughts.
One useful strategy is to divide paragraphs into four sentences where each sentence is centred around a single sentence that presents new information while drawing connections with previous sentences.
A successful paper will have a concluding paragraph that summarizes its main point(s) and suggests further avenues of inquiry.
Ultimately, it is most important to make sure your reader understands the point you’re trying to convey and has no confusion about how it relates to previously mentioned points.
Once you start working on essays throughout your academic career, they become easier to write and begin gaining confidence in your ability to succeed academically.
The final step before submitting an essay is proofreading and editing. When editing your work, pay attention to punctuation, verb tenses, and proper usage of commas and apostrophes.
You don’t need perfect grammar to submit a high-quality paper!
As long as your content is clear, creative and readable we’ll consider it successful! Your task now is to think of a good topic, gather sources and decide which one suits your purpose best.
Don’t forget the introductions and conclusions – these parts often determine if an essay succeeds or fails!
Follow these rules and you will notice a difference in your grades. Sometimes it takes practice to master the essay writing process, but it is well worth the effort.
Not only does the practice help you become a better writer, but it also shows professors that you care about your education.
Here is a list of common mistakes students make when writing an essay and a few tips to avoid them:
The thesis statement is too broad or vague, resulting in an unfocused essay.
Avoid this mistake by narrowing your thesis and adding more detail to your claim.
The conclusion is too short or general, leaving the reader feeling unfulfilled.
Avoid this mistake by providing specific details about what you’ve learned and the implications of your research.
Verbs lack variety, making the writing sound repetitive or choppy.
Avoid this mistake by changing your verbs to make the writing more interesting and less repetitive.
Punctuation is missing, including a comma or semicolon to separate clauses.
Avoid this mistake by double-checking your work for any missing punctuation.
Comma splices happen when a comma is used in place of a coordinating conjunction.
Avoid this mistake by avoiding the use of commas whenever possible and using them only when you really need them to separate clauses in a sentence.
Incomplete sentences, sometimes called run-ons, occur when two thoughts aren’t connected.
They should be avoided by finishing sentences and thoughtfully selecting where to break them up into separate sentences.
Sentences are poorly constructed with no sense of unity or coherence because they’re disjointed.
Avoid this mistake by practising readability with each word and ensuring that each sentence flows together logically. A great way to check whether or not your sentences flow together logically is to put spaces between each sentence.
If there’s still a disconnection, you can try rewriting the sentence.
Lastly, if none of those suggestions helped and your sentences still feel disconnected from one another, then try reordering some of them.
There are many different ways to rearrange words so don’t feel like you have failed. Just keep trying different combinations until you find something that works for you.
How to write a Concise and Memorable Introduction for your essay
The introduction is the first thing that a person reads.
The idea of the intro is to capture your reader’s attention and make them want to keep reading.
One of the best ways to catch people’s attention is by addressing a controversial topic, so you might want to consider starting off with a sentence like What does President Trump mean for America?
This is a controversial and intriguing question that many people are curious about.
Additionally, you could mention your own thoughts about the situation.
Nowadays, there are many interesting issues that exist and that we need to come to terms with.
If you start out by explaining a complicated issue, your readers will be intrigued and more likely to continue reading.
Starting with a provocative statement that is short and to the point is a good way to introduce your essay.
College Essay Introduction Checklist
- State your main point (thesis statement) clearly
- Give your audience background information about the issue.
- Discuss your position and what you plan to discuss in the essay.
- Use transition words such as furthermore organize your thoughts.
- Explain your stance on the issue for argumentative and persuasive essays
- Include evidence from your research.
- Cite your sources appropriately
How to Write a Great Conclusion for Your Essay
To conclude your essay, you should reiterate the main points that you’ve already discussed and summarize the importance of those points.
This is a chance to go back to your thesis and expand on it.
You should also include any insights that you had while researching or writing the essay.
You can tie up any loose ends, or answer any unanswered questions that your readers may have.
It is important to state your purpose again and remind your reader why this was important to you and why they should care. Once you’re done, don’t forget to restate the thesis and provide a final summary of the essay’s major ideas!
Don’t use cliches! Don’t rush to the conclusion. Make sure to leave your reader satisfied and wanting to read your future work.
How to edit your essay?
Read it out loud and take note of anything that doesn’t sound right.
Be sure to capitalize the first letter in a sentence and each proper noun.
Pay attention to commas, quotation marks, periods, apostrophes, ellipses and other punctuation marks. Make sure the tone is consistent and appropriate for the audience.
Finally, reread your work to ensure that all of the sentences are logically connected and cohesive. You can also ask a friend or classmate o read your essay and point out errors.
Essay topics Examples
Essay topics for college students include anything that relates to their school work. You might not think that essays would apply to you, but the truth is that writing essays are necessary for college students. Remember, it is never too late to learn new skills and create better habits, and essay writing is just one of the things you’ll have to do in college. Here is a list of essay topics for college students to work on.
- What was your favourite class this semester?
- What is the biggest challenge you faced during your freshman year of college?
- Why did you choose to attend this university instead of elsewhere?
- What is your future career goal, and why do you want that particular career path?
- Write a business essay for your business class.
- Write a personal essay for your psychology or sociology class.
- Write about your experience with mental health.
- What is your opinion on the recent change in administration?
- What are your plans for the future?
- Write about a time when you felt misunderstood.
- Write about a time you felt proud.
- Write about your dreams for the future.
- Write about a time you made a mistake.
- Write about the feeling of being lost.
- Write about the feeling of being overwhelmed.
- Write about your reaction to last week’s midterm exam.
College Essay Samples
Essay Sample #1 – The Revolution of Cell Phones
This essay example was written by students at North Carolina State University.
The Revolution of Cell Phones has really changed the world. The cell phone is one device that has become an essential part in every person’s life. It is a necessity and not a luxury item that can be ignored. A major change from past to present is the number of people who are carrying around cell phones all day, all the time. In some cases, a person will have their cell phone with them 24 hours a day. Not only do they have it on them, but they also have it within arm’s reach when they sleep. With this extreme reliance on their devices, many people worry about what will happen if their phone breaks or gets lost. Cell phones cannot just be replaced with another because most people keep photos, contacts, and other important information stored on their cellphones. Replacing these items would take a significant amount of work as well as money. Furthermore, there is always the chance that someone would want to steal your old cellphone; you could potentially lose everything you had on your phone without even realizing it. The revolution of cell phones has brought about many changes to society for better or for worse.
Firstly, there are disadvantages such as theft and worries about losing contact with family members, but there are also benefits such as having a GPS locator, keeping up-to-date with the latest news in any location, connecting with friends and family remotely through social media networks like Facebook and Twitter, sending texts messages, playing games like Angry Birds while waiting in line at the grocery store (or anytime), etcetera. Although the benefits outweigh the risks, it is important to consider both before making decisions.
It might be hard to imagine living without a cell phone now, but try thinking back 10 years ago–when almost nobody had one! When people would go out into public places they were easily identified as that guy–you know, the one who doesn’t have a cell phone. Nowadays you don’t know who doesn’t have a cell phone–nobody looks weird anymore. You might find yourself in a position where somebody asks to borrow your phone. Most likely they will either use it to make a call or text somebody right then, so it’s okay to lend it to them. But, no matter what happens–whether somebody borrowed your phone and never returned it, you left your phone somewhere and couldn’t find it again, whatever situation–the best thing you can do is be responsible for protecting your own data and stop storing everything on one device that could easily break.
Cellphone technology has come a long way since it first became popular. For example, the cell phone is a necessity and not a luxury item that can be ignored. There are advantages and disadvantages to owning a cellphone, but it is important to weigh both of those before making a decision. As the popularity of cell phone usage has increased, people have begun to live more and more of their lives on the phone. Some people carry a cell phone with them everywhere they go and it is within arm’s reach as they sleep. People are worried about what would happen if their phones broke, got lost, or were stolen. They need to be aware that once the data is on their phone, it is vulnerable and easy to steal.
Finally, it is important to remember that cell phone has been very beneficial to society. Cell phones are able to help people with things such as navigation, getting quick updates on the news and their favourite sports team, and staying connected with loved ones. No matter how you look at it, the cell phone has been a revolutionary invention that has changed our everyday lives in ways that we never imagined.
Sample Essay #2 – How to Stay Motivated
This college essay was written by Tom from Texas Tech University. Tom is from Houston, TX and wants to share his story of being motivated in high school.
Motivation is a powerful thing. It can move mountains and can make you achieve goals that you may never have thought were possible. Motivation has been a problem for me as far back as I can remember, which is why I decided to write an essay on how to stay motivated in high school. Motivation is something that you have to work on. I can’t just hope that it will happen; it has to be something that you put the effort into.
The topic of motivation has always intrigued me and sparked my curiosity. How does one stay motivated? Why is it important? What are the different types of motivation? These are all questions that ran through my head when I started researching this subject. One type of motivation is extrinsic, which can be anything from rewards, punishment, or approval. Extrinsic motivation comes in the form of external forces, like money, grades, and other outside factors. Another type is intrinsic. Intrinsic motivators can be anything from a sense of belonging to fulfilling a calling. Extrinsic motivators can be good at times, but it is typically better to rely on intrinsic motivators because they last longer and provide more satisfaction.
There is also motivation which is the lack of motivation. Motivation has many causes including boredom, apathy, and depression. Research has shown that reward-based programs often result in lower productivity and higher levels of motivation among employees than non-reward-based programs. However, positive reinforcement is still essential in any program aimed at increasing worker productivity. Positive reinforcement should be seen as part of a larger system of rewards and punishments that include praise and criticism, consequences for performance, job security, fair pay scales, opportunities for advancement, education benefits, and health care coverage (Heslin).
I think that another reason that some people may have trouble staying motivated during high school is because of boredom. My favourite part about high school was probably a senior year because everything seemed so much more exciting due to the fact that there was so much going on. When you’re bored there’s nothing else to do except finding something new to keep yourself occupied with.
In conclusion, I believe that it is important to get the most out of your high school experience. Whether you want to go to college, pursue a trade, or enter the military, these are all great options. As long as you’re doing what makes you happy then it doesn’t really matter what your future holds. That is why I believe that it is vital to motivate oneself and not give up in order to reach one’s goals. I have found that the best way to stay motivated is to set goals and take small steps in the direction of those goals. For example, if I wanted to lose weight I could first set a goal for how much weight I would like to lose. Then, each week I would try to eat healthier foods and exercise for 30 minutes three days per week. Once the goal is met, it is important to maintain that progress and set a new goal.
Nursing Essay Sample # 3 – Importance of Nursing
This is a product of a student from Walden university
Nursing is an important profession because it takes care of people and helps keep them healthy. Nurses can be found in hospitals, schools, hospices and nursing homes where they provide health care for patients. They help with all sorts of activities including changing bandages, taking blood pressure, monitoring patient conditions and assisting with feeding. Many nurses also work on the administration side by managing patient records or supervising other nurses in their jobs. There are many different types of nurses including Registered Nurse (RN), Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and Certified Nurse’s Aide (CNA). Overall, nursing helps the community as well as individuals. It assists society in delivering healthcare services efficiently and effectively; in addition, it enables patients to lead healthier lives with less suffering because of minor illnesses that have been cared for early on.
The benefits of nursing to the community include relieving pressure off emergency rooms, reducing infections by keeping wounds clean, reducing doctor visits because the nurses do some of these tasks themselves and saving money. People who require assistance in their daily living like seniors would not be able to live independently without nursing aids like CNAs who come once a day to check on them and make sure everything is running smoothly at home. These professionals help reduce the social burden on friends and family members of those senior citizens. In hospitals, nurses aid doctors in providing excellent medical care to patients while simultaneously preventing hospital-acquired diseases by enforcing stringent policies.
Nursing benefits individuals too by making it easier for them to take better care of themselves. For instance, most nurses offer nutrition advice which is useful because good nutrition leads to better overall health. Patients that receive this advice will feel more inclined to follow through with it so they can maintain their health. Furthermore, nurses teach techniques on how to cope during stressful periods such as injury or illness which reduces anxiety and depression levels in patients too. These strategies give individuals the ability to enjoy life even when they’re not feeling 100%.
Nurses are the backbone of the medical system. Without nurses, there would be no way for patients to receive quality care and treatment. Due to the nature of their job, nurses are usually exposed to stressful environments. Some ways that nurses can avoid this stress and stay healthy themselves is through exercising regularly, meditating, eating nutritious foods and getting enough sleep. Nurses should also try to establish strong relationships with others in order to combat feelings of isolation. Research shows that having social connections reduces the risks of depression, illness and death. Nurses should take time out of their busy schedules to interact with coworkers in person rather than online so they get the benefit of interacting face-to-face. Technology is always helpful for professional development but it does not replace human interaction when it comes to bonding with co-workers. Lastly, it is important to mention that nursing is a rewarding career. Nurses are not just restricted to the confines of their profession, they also participate in other areas of life such as being mothers, wives and community volunteers. This gives them fulfilment in their everyday lives outside of nursing.
College essays are a vital part of your academic career.
Writing an essay will help you better understand the subject and display your knowledge.
Not to mention, they are a reflection of who you are.
By investing in the process, you’ll find that essays become easier and more enjoyable to write.
College essays checklist
1) Take your time to think of a good topic.
2) Gather sources and figure out which one you want to use.
3) Make sure your introduction and conclusion are complete and organized, and that they present your argument in the clearest manner possible.
4) Proofread for punctuation, verb tense, commas, etc.
5) Have fun! College essays are an important part of your life, but they don’t need to feel overwhelming.
Bonus Essay Writing Tips
- A thesis statement should be debatable. You don’t want to begin by stating something nobody can disagree with. Instead, come up with something thought-provoking or slightly controversial.
- Try to avoid cliche phrases such as in today’s society or what the world needs now. If you’re not confident enough in your ability to argue without using these phrases, it would be wise not to include them at all. Cliche statements are a sign of laziness and lack of creativity. They don’t demonstrate your true abilities and instead portray you as unoriginal.
- Be honest. There is no point in lying to yourself or others; all you’ll do is get caught and end up wasting your time. You should be proud of the opinions that you share and comfortable with the writer you are becoming.
- Choose your words carefully. You should be thoughtful in your word choice. You want to write with intention, and you want to show that you put a lot of consideration into each word. This includes choosing powerful verbs and strong nouns.
- When writing a long essay, remember to use transitions! These are important because they help the reader follow your train of thought. Transitions allow you to move between topics and sections of your essay. Without a clear path, the reader might be left confused. It is your responsibility to guide the reader through your essay and make sure that you cover everything that you promised in the introduction. This is where good transitional sentences come in handy.
Doing so will keep the reader engaged and curious about what else you have to say.
- Don’t Be vague. Don’t start your essay without any direction. Make sure that you know where it’s going and how it will get there.